How to Keep Your Converse Black

Converse shoes should only be washed by hand.
... Stephen Lovekin/Getty Images Entertainment/Getty Images

Converse shoes are vintage classics, but that doesn't mean they have to look like you've been wearing them since the 1970s. The canvas material used in black Converse shoes is susceptible to fading, so proper washing techniques are necessary if you want to make sure that the shoe keeps a vibrant hue rather than a dull one. Washing machines are too rough on your Converse shoes and should be avoided. Limited exposure to the sun is also crucial to prevent fading. Hand wash your Converse and they can last for years, just don't tell anyone how old they are.

Remove the shoe's shoelaces if the laces do not need to be cleaned. You can hand wash the shoelaces with soap and water or wash them in the washing machine if they do need to be cleaned.

Add cold water and soap to your toothbrush.

Lightly scrub the shoe with the toothbrush to remove dirt and sweat stains.

Rinse the soap from your shoes with cold water.

Leave your shoes on a towel to air-dry at room temperature.

  • Do not use hot water when washing your Converse shoes, as it can fade the fabric.
  • Avoid using bleach, which can break down the shoes' fabric.
  • Do not put your shoes in a clothes dryer.
  • Apply black shoe polish to your Converse to boost the color of a faded area.
  • Hand clean your Converse regularly to keep them looking new.
  • Wear good-quality socks to prevent perspiration stains.

Michael Briggs is a trending news reporter for He has interned for digital and print publications including "The New York Daily News," "The Princeton Packet" and Thrillist. He graduated from Michigan State University with a B.A. in journalism with a sports reporting concentration.